Josh Adams drove down the lane and glided through the air, around a defender, dishing a pass to the left corner. The degree of difficulty on the move flirted with a 10, and the former Cowboy made it look easy.
The young Johnathan Motley threw down an uncontested dunk set up through Adams’ court vision. Immediately following the slam, Adams grimaced with the same excited disdain that he showed in his time at the University of Wyoming.
Adams still has it. He still has more bounce than a kangaroo on a trampoline. He still possesses the same competitive fire he displayed each and every game in the brown and gold. Adams still has the basketball prowess that warrants an NBA roster spot.
Adams currently plays on the Dallas Summer League team and has decent minutes in the Mavericks’ first four games. Adams boasts averages of 7.8 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game in 16.5 minutes of floor time.
Adams played on Denver’s Summer League team last year and averaged 4.8 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists in a little over 15 minutes of floor time. So he has shown growth from year one to year two of Summer League.
I know the NBA is all about youth and upside and 3-point shooting, but I find it hard to believe one of the 30 NBA teams couldn’t use a player with Adams’ capabilities.
Adams stands as one of the most important and special players in UW basketball history. And it’s not as if UW hasn’t had some historically distinguished ballers. Kenny Sailors invented the modern-day jump shot on the hollowed grounds of Half Acre Gymnasium and led the Cowboys to a National Championship in 1943. Fennis Dembo blessed the front of Sports Illustrated leading up to a promising year in the late 1980s.
Adams belongs in the same breath as those distinguished individuals. He’s responsible for leading the Pokes to the school’s first-ever Mountain West Conference championship — the 2015 MWC Tournament title. He hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with just more than a minute to play in the championship and was named Most Valuable Player of a tournament that saw Wyoming topple the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds en route to the crown.
Adams finished his career fifth on the all-time UW scoring list. He garnered Honorable Mention All-American and MWC Player of the Year honors as a senior after averaging close to 25 points per game. He valiantly led a Wyoming team devoid of much talent and put a signature stamp on his career, kissing the half-court logo and thanking the crowd following his final game as a Cowboy.
Adams captivated fans of all ages. His high-flying dunks and awe-inspiring athleticism had young Cowboys flocking to the Arena-Auditorium to catch a glimpse. His unquestioned leadership and drive gained the respect of the older generation clamoring to see a well-deserving alpha.
Adams embodied a Cowboy’s toughness, and he still possesses everything necessary to carve out a niche in the NBA.